Five trends that will define travel experiences in 2020

The Barceló Hotel Group has launched Barceló Experiences, a digital platform that offers unique experiences at destinations, backed by the company’s in-depth knowledge of the cities where its hotels are located

December 2019.- In a world flooded with alternatives for travellers, there are still niches to be targeted.The Barceló Hotel Group has used its social media channels to survey nearly 100,000 users across the world and present the travel trends for next year. The hotelligence culture, sustainable hyperlocalism, phygitalism, culinary tourism and personalised experiences that create knowledge will form part of travel agendas in 2020.
In response to the latest trends and traveller needs, the Barceló Hotel Group has launched Barceló Experiences, a digital platform featuring the best guides on what to see and do at every destination.Starting with Granada as the pilot, this new online channel is available to everyone and contains a comprehensive array of activities that invite visitors to explore Granada like a local.Over the course of 2020, new destinations, features and unique experiences will be added.
The hotel group, which has more than 250 establishments in 22 countries, is transferring its extensive experience and expertise to a digital platform that will enable travellers to become immersed at a destination, just like locals.This is a new way of travelling by the hand of a destination’s experts.

Faced with excess information, comments on social media and reviews on digital platforms, a growing number of travellers prefer to turn to local opinion leaders that guarantee reliability and address their needs.

The hotelligence culture will define trends for 2020.Hotels remain positioned as reliable hosts that provide local knowledge and personalised service.
According to data from the survey carried out by the Barceló Hotel Group, 85% of people trust the recommendations provided by the hotel where they are staying.
Sustainable hyperlocalism

To reduce the environmental impact, travel to secondary destinations and a focus on local experiences will be on the rise.
In 2020, travellers will opt to explore authentic destinations that are lesser known.Local experiences will gain ground over mass tourism.
Along these lines, Barceló Experiencesshowcases destinations and supports hyperlocalism as a form of local expertise.
75% of the travellers surveyed prefer authenticity and a local feel, but without omitting the most emblematic features of a destination.
Phygitalism, the great ally of travellers

In 2020, travellers will have higher expectations as they search for a comprehensive experience that combines digital aspects—through continuous technological innovations—and friendly service.
The Barceló Hotel Group’s study on trends has concluded that there are three phases in which the use of technology varies: 40% of those surveyed search for inspiration on social mediabefore going on a trip, and more than 50% of users prefer to book their experiences through online platforms.However, once they reach their destination, recommendations from hotel staff and feedback from other travellers are the most reliable sources of information in 80% of instances.
Barceló Experiences leverage their phygital characteristics to combine in-person service and a trustworthy digital platform.
The Group views technology as a fundamental pillar for any trip, but without losing sight of the emotional and human aspects. More than 30,000 employees comprise this vast network of guest services at the destination, all backed by an extremely useful and accessible digital platform.
Foodie trips

In 2020, food will be chosen by travellers as the top experience to be explored through locally-sourced ingredients and the regional culture.

Discovering dishes, restaurants, recipes and chefs, and becoming thoroughly familiar with the local cuisine, will be the alternative selected by 46% of those surveyed.
Additionally, most participants view good service and hospitality as a key element of the culinary experience.
The Barceló Hotel Group understands the importance of this trend and has positioned itself as a trustworthy adviser that offers proven experiences, all arranged with a maximum focus on customer service.
Personalisation: DIY plans

Travellers enjoy planning their stay based on local experiences that provide knowledge.
More than 80% of travellers enjoy organising their activities before reaching the destination.
Barceló Experiences is one step ahead of this trend by providing an array of detailed information that travellers can use when planning their trip.
With Barceló Experiences, visitors can tailor their trip with a clear focus on personalisation and the peace of mind that only a local expert can provide.
Upon reaching the destination, travellers want positive and enriching experiences that will create unforgettable memories.
57% of travellers want to expand their knowledge on trips.
In this phase, hotels play an active role in the decisions made by travellers and in improving their trip through transformative experiences that make them feel at ease, regardless of whether or not they are hotel guests.

About the Barceló Hotel Group

The Barceló Hotel Group, the hotel division of Barceló Corporación Empresarial, is the 2nd largest chain in Spain and the 31st in the world.It currently has 251 urban and leisure hotels with 4 and 5 stars, and over 55,000 rooms spread out across 22 countries and marketed under four brands:Royal Hideaway Luxury Hotels & Resorts, Barceló Hotels & Resorts, Occidental Hotels & Resorts and Allegro Hotels.